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Common Pottery Terms

Pottery refers to the process of making ceramic household items, like dinnerware, as well as more luxurious items, like teapots and vases, out of clay. Clay is a natural material found in the earth that contains a good deal of water moisture. While still wet, the clay resembles mud and in this stage can be shaped using a variety of pottery tools. Once the shape is complete, the clay will be fired in a kiln, which removes all moisture and allows the clay to become hard. Making pottery is a very involved process and some of the terms are listed below.

  • Ceramics – This word comes from the Greek keramikos which translates to of pottery. Earthenware clays were the earliest type of ceramics, but this group also includes stoneware, porcelain and bone china. Ceramics classes are often taught at art centers, giving beginners and intermediate students an outlet to make their own pieces of ceramic artwork out of clay.
  • Porcelain – A type of ceramic mix that is white. Porcelain is often used to make fine dinnerware and tea services like teapots. The finished product is usually adorned with paint.
  • Potters Wheel – A common pottery tool that is used to shape objects. The clay is placed in the center and then spun around while it is being shaped by hand. This process is also called throwing.
  • Potter's Mark – The term used for the stamp, or mark, that an artist gives their product. It is usually a unique symbol limited to a particular artist or pottery house. Outlet stores usually sell a particular mark.
  • Glaze – A special type of paint that is used for ceramics to give them a brilliant sheen of color. The glaze has to be applied after the clay has been fired in the kiln.
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    Caro's Studio
    2505 Kathleen Cove, Leander, TX 78641
    Caro's Studio Pottery, Art Hour for Kids, and Clay Hour for adults. She gives art lessons to kids and has open studio time weekly for adults to come and create whatever they would like with clay.
    (512) 422-4594
    Ceramic Lodge
    18 Chisholm Trail, Round Rock, TX 78681
    Unlock your creativity and visit Ceramic Lodge in Round Rock, TX, for pottery painting, clay classes, and glass fusing. Ask about our summer camp.
    (512) 643-4323
    J & V Pottery
    50004 Clear Creek Rd, Fort Hood, TX 76544
    (254) 532-6865
    Leatherman Service
    121 Blanco Dr, Hutto, TX 78634
    (512) 846-1896
    Garden Ridge
    2800 S Interstate 35, Round Rock, TX 78681
    (512) 310-1130
    Ceramic Lodge
    18 Chisholm Trl, Round Rock, TX 78681
    (512) 248-2100
    Circle In A Square Pottery
    3742 County Road 123, Round Rock, TX 78664
    (512) 246-3473
    Round Rock Pottery
    2001 N Mays St Ste 6, Round Rock, TX 78664
    (512) 248-2555
    Le Creuset at Round Rock Premium Outlets
    4401 N Interstate 35 Ste 161, Round Rock, TX 78664
    (512) 863-7181
    Practically Pikasso
    4310 W Waco Dr, Waco, TX 76710
    (254) 776-2200
    Kcfi Inc
    613 Austin Ave, Waco, TX 76701
    (254) 754-9904
    Pottery Ranch T
    6000 N Us Highway 281, Marble Falls, TX 78654
    (830) 693-0100
    3 White Doves
    309 Main St Ste 1, Marble Falls, TX 78654
    (830) 693-5253
    George's Timberhouse
    515 New Dallas Hwy, Waco, TX 76705
    (254) 799-7358
    Feats of Clay
    4630 Burnet Rd, Austin, TX 78756
    (512) 453-2111

    Pottery can include a wide variety of products such as handmade bowls, ceramic plates, vases, teapots, and stoneware. Some of the earliest known pieces of pottery were figurines and bowls. Today many potters focus on dinnerware, dishes, plates, and vases that combine artistic shaping techniques with decorative colors. Not all potters make their dinnerware, stoneware, and porcelain vases with the same techniques. Some, for instance, only make handmade items. They shape the clay objects by hand on a wheel, add a glaze, and then fire it in a hot kiln. Other companies use mechanized processes to create their products. These pieces of pottery tend to cost less than those made by hand, but many people prefer plates, dishes, and accessories made by highly trained artisans. Many stores also focus on different types of pottery products. Gardening stores for instance, will usually have clay pots, but very few of them will keep antique vases and dishes in stock. Instead, consumers should find antique stores that focus on platters, teapots, vases, and other decorative items that have been discontinued. You can learn more about the pottery companies and artisans that work in your area by using a popular search engine to find their websites. Many professional potters invite customers to come to their studios, where they can watch ceramics being made by hand with a turntable and kiln. This gives individuals and groups the opportunity to learn more about making these products and gives them access to unique designs that they cannot buy anywhere else.
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